Photo: Normand Ranger vessel; Source: Solstad

Solstad vessels to support drilling off Australia and Timor Leste

Norwegian vessel owner Solstad Offshore has secured new contract awards for its vessels to support drilling campaigns in Australia and Timor Leste.

Solstad confirmed on Friday that the large 2010-built AHTS Normand Ranger has been awarded a contract in Australia, starting in 2Q 2021.

The vessel will mobilise from Norway and will then provide support to a major drilling campaign offshore North-Western Australia, securing about one-year of utilization for the vessel, Solstad added.

To remind, the Normand Ranger vessel previously operated in the North Sea under the one-year extension of a frame agreement with TechnipFMC agreed back in December 2019. The deal started around April 2020.

Now, during the drilling campaign, the Normand Ranger will operate in connection with a moored semi-submersible drilling rig, with the base port being Dampier.

The drilling campaign also includes support from the Solstad AHTS vessels – the 2010-built Normand Saracen and the 2013-built Far Senator.

In addition, the 2008-built PSV Far Seeker, has been awarded a contract by Santos.

The vessel will support drilling activities offshore Timor Leste, operating predominantly from Darwin.

The firm contractual period is approximately six months, with further options available to Santos, and is scheduled to start in April 2021.

Santos has recently made the final investment decision for the Bayu-Undan infill program. The $235 million Phase 3C infill drilling program at the Bayu-Undan field in the Timor Sea, offshore Timor-Leste will include three production wells.

The wells will be drilled using the Noble Tom Prosser jack-up rig, with the first well scheduled to spud in the second quarter of 2021, and production from the first well expected in the third quarter of 2021.

Solstad noted that the arrival of the Normand Ranger supplements Solstads existing fleet of four large AHTS and five PSVs operating within Australia and New Zealand, managed from Solstads Perth office.